HERMAS

ANGELS

ANGELS The scope of this article.—The passages in the apostolic writings in which angels are mentioned or referred to will be examined; some of them are ambiguous and have been interpreted in various ways. The doctrine of the OT and of the apocryphal period on the subject has been so fully dealt with in HDB …

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ABSTINENCE

ABSTINENCE Introduction.—The whole of morality on its negative side may be included under Abstinence. Christian moral progress (sanctification) includes a holding fast (κατέχεσθαι) of the good, and an abstaining from (ἀπέχεσθαι) every form of evil (1 Th 5:21f.). While Christianity has general laws to distinguish the good from the bad, yet for each individual Christian …

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The Canon of Scripture

The Canon of Scripture We usually think of the Bible as one large book. In reality, it is a small library of sixty-six individual books. Together these books comprise what we call the canon of sacred Scripture. The term canon is derived from a Greek word that means “measuring rod,” “standard,” or “norm.” Historically, the …

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Apostolic Canons

APOSTOLIC CANONS A series of eighty-four or eighty-five canons that in Greek form the concluding chapter (47) of Book 8 of the Apostolic Constitutions (Funk, 1905, Vol. 1, pp. 564-94). The Sahidic Coptic version counts seventy-one canons, the Arabic series (Book 2 of the 127 Canons of the Apostles) fifty-six only, the same as the …

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Apostolic Fathers

APOSTOLIC FATHERS Apostolic Fathers is a name given to a group of authors who came just after the Apostles, such as Clement of Rome. According to Origen and Eusebius, Clement was a disciple of St. Paul and was mentioned in the Epistle to the Philippians 4:3. Ireneaus noted that he was the third Bishop of …

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Saint Clement I

SAINT CLEMENT I A bishop of Rome at the end of the first century and the second successor to Peter. A certain number of works are attributed to him in the Greek literary tradition, works whose authenticity has been widely discussed in modern criticism. Of these, there is only one that can be cited as …

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Penance

PENANCE The book of The Shepherd by Hermas (written in Rome in the mid-second century) mentioned baptism as the unique way for the remission of sins. But for Christians who committed a great sin after baptism, there is the metanoia or penance. Tertullian in the beginning of the third century published the first treatise On …

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Apostolic Fathers

APOSTOLIC FATHERS The designation “apostolic fathers” goes back to J. B. Cotelier, who in 1672 published a two-volume edition of the Sanctorum patrum qui temporibus apostolicis floruerunt. Since then it has been usual to group under the name of Patres apostolici certain early Christian writers who were regarded as disciples of the apostles, still belonging …

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Valentinian Exposition

VALENTINIAN EXPOSITION A Valentinian Exposition (Codex XV, tractate 2, of the NAG HAMMADI LIBRARY) presents itself as a document of revelation intended for a restricted elite: “I will speak my mystery to those who are mine and to those who will be mine.” This revelation concerns first of all the Father, then the Son, the …

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Hermas

HERMAS A second-century Roman author of The Shepherd, an apocalyptic work that is a call to repentance. He is included among the apostolic fathers. The Greek original has not come down complete. Alongside relatively small papyrus fragments, mention should be made of the CODEX SINAITICUS, an Athos Codex, and a papyrus at the University of …

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